Dutch marathon runner gives the Olympics one last shot using cycling as alternative training

(Photo: Nationale Nederlanden)

Last year, Dutch marathon runner Michel Butter decided it was time to retire and gave up on ever participating in the Olympic marathon. However, he just can’t seem to let go of the thought of trying to qualify one last time, and decided to give it another go. One thing he is doing different this time around, though, is that he’s been regularly using cycling as an alternative form of training.

Even though it seems logical, this type of training is rare for a marathon runner. We will see whether it works or not on Apr. 11, 2021, when Butter toes the line of the NN Mission Marathon in Hamburg. That’s where he’s hoping to earn himself a ticket to Tokyo. “I’ll do it. Give it my all one last time to qualify for the Olympics,” he told Nationale Nederlanden.

Butter looks forward to race and to see what his different approach to training will bring: “I enjoy the way in which I approach sport at the moment a lot.”

Butter never qualified for the Olympics before, but finished sixth at the New York Marathon in 2017, and ran a PB of 2:09:58 during the Amsterdam Marathon in 2012. During the Amsterdam Marathon in 2015 Butter was close to an Olympic qualification, but missed it by a painful eight seconds.